L.A. County Meets Threshold for Less Restrictive Orange Tier

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Photo by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES

Los Angeles County has met the threshold for the less restrictive orange tier in the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy. A revised Los Angeles County Health Officer Order will go into effect on Monday, April 5 at 12:01 a.m. to reflect newly permitted activities. This allows the County to follow the state guidelines and wait until three weeks are completed in the red tier to be sure that case numbers do not rise this third week since the County’s earlier re-openings.

Today, the State released updated numbers; L.A. County’s adjusted case rate dropped from 3.7 new cases per 100,000 people to 3.1 new cases per 100,000 people. The test positivity rate dropped from 1.8% to 1.5% and in areas with the fewest health affirming resources, L.A. County’s test positivity rate dropped from 2.5% to 2.1%.

The Health Officer Order and modified directives for businesses will be posted on Friday, with an effective date of April 5. Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) teams will be available this week and through the weekend to provide information about upcoming changes, allowing establishments to be prepared for full compliance with the required safety modifications. 

On April 5, assuming County case numbers do not increase, the following changes will be made to the Health Officer Order under the Orange Tier: 

  • Bars that do not provide meals will be allowed to open outdoors with distancing, masking and infection control safety measures. Indoor operations are not permitted. Masks are required except when people are eating or drinking. There can be no counter seating and people can eat or drink only when they are seated. Tables must be 8 feet apart, with a maximum of 6 people from up to 3 different households. There can be no live entertainment, television is permitted, and hours of operations are from 11:30 a.m. until 10:00 p.m.
  • Breweries, Wineries, Distilleries that do not serve meals can remain open outdoors and can also open indoors at 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer. These establishments will follow the same public health directives as bars for their outdoor  areas, however, there are additional requirements for indoor spaces: reservations are required for indoor seating, there is a maximum of 6 people per table and they must be from the same household, and there is no live entertainment or television viewing indoors.
  • Restaurants can increase capacity for indoor dining to 50% capacity or 200 people, whichever is less with continued safety modifications.
  • Cardrooms operate indoors at 25% capacity. There must be 8-feet of distancing between tables and masks are always required. Food and beverages remain banned from card tables.
  • Places of Worship can hold services indoors at 50% capacity.
  • Fitness Centers can operate indoors at 25% capacity and indoor pools can now re-open. Masks are always required unless swimming.
  • Movie Theaters increase capacity to 50% or 200 people, whichever is less. Seats must be reserved, and each group must have 6 feet of distance from other groups in all directions. Eating is allowed in only designated areas or in your reserved seat.
  • Family Entertainment Centers can open indoors at 25% capacity for distanced activities, such as bowling or escape rooms. Masks remain required.
  • Grocery and Retail Stores can increase capacity to 75%, although Public Health strongly recommends grocery stores remain at 50% capacity until April 15 to allow as many grocery store workers as possible get vaccinated.
  • Hair Salons, Barbershops and Personal Care Services can increase capacity to 75% with masks required, except for services where customers need to remove their masks. For services where customers must remove their face coverings, staff must wear a fitted N95 or a mask with a face shield.
  • Museums, Zoos and Aquariums can be open indoors at 50% capacity.
  • Youth and Adult Recreational Sports can apply to Public Health for approval for athletic events, tournaments or competitions that involve more than two teams or multiple individuals.

Today, Public Health has confirmed 26 new deaths and 386 new cases of COVID-19. The lower number of deaths and cases may reflect reporting delays over the weekend and holiday. To date, Public Health identified 1,218,958 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 23,110 deaths.


What would be the next reopening tier?

The next phase following the orange tier, would be the yellow tier. To qualify for the category, counties must have fewer than one new case per 100,000 people daily and a coronavirus test positivity rate of less than 2%.

In counties that reach yellow:

  • Indoor restaurant dining rooms, movie theaters, houses of worship, gyms, fitness centers, dance and yoga studios, card rooms and satellite wagering sites can open at 50% capacity.
  • Wineries, breweries and distilleries can open indoors at 50% capacity or 200 people, whichever is fewer.
  • Indoor family entertainment centers, including arcades and ice skating rinks, can reopen at 50% capacity.
  • Indoor malls’ common areas can reopen, but food courts must operate at a reduced capacity. Museums, zoos and aquariums can open indoors at full capacity but must follow modifications.
  • Breweries and distilleries that don’t serve meals can reopen indoors at 50% capacity.

For information about who is eligible for COVID-19 vaccine in L.A. County, how to make an appointment if it is your turn, what verifications you will need to show at your vaccination appointment, and much more, visit: www.VaccinateLACounty.com  (English) and www.VacunateLosAngeles.com  (Spanish). Vaccinations are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status.

County Reopening Protocols, COVID-19 Surveillance Interactive Dashboard, Roadmap to Recovery, Recovery Dashboard, and additional actions you can take to protect yourself, your family and your community are on the Public Health website, www.publichealth.lacounty.gov

 

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